here in japan, it's 7:00 p.m. on wednesday, i'm james tengan in tokyo. welcome to "newsline," ash charter apparently indicated the country could send navy vessels to patrol in disputed areas of the south china sea. carter made the comments after a meeting between u.s. and australian defense and foreign ministers.
>> i'll make no mistake, the united states will fly, sail, and operate wherever international law allows. as we do around the world, and the south china sea is not and will not be an exception. >> china has been building artificial islands and doing construction work on the separa spratley islands concerning its neighbors. american officials say there's no legal reason u.s. military ships can't sail within 12 nautical miles of the artificial islands. philippine officials would back the u.s. plan to send ships saying it's important for the international community to safeguard freedom of knave gags. >> the spokesperson for china's foreign ministry criticized carter's remarks.
>> adding that she hopes relevant nations stop stirring up the south china sea issue. a long running row in japan is heating up. the governor cancelled a permit for reclamation work on the future home of the base, and now officials with the regional bureau of japan's defense ministry are pushing back. officials asked the land minister to suspend governor's decision to revoke the permit, and they are calling for the ruling to be nullified. a day earlier, he revoked the reclamation approval for an area off the coast, and the japan's
plan to relocate the air station from a depositionly p densely p. they have laws to determine whether the revocation is valid and expected to take a month before making a decision. they can suspend the revocation for the time being. the case could eventually develop into a court battle between the national and prefecture governments. japanese officials delivered the latest assessment of the economic situation. gene otani has the business headlines, gene? >> thanks, james. >> government officials say japan's economy continues on aed mo rat recovery, but weaknesses are seen in some areas. officials lowered the overall assessment for the first time in over a year. they released the economic report for october after a meeting of relevant ministers. the report describes industrial production as being in a weak
tone recently. that's a downgrade from the september assessment which said industrial output was flat. this is due to a decrease in production of automobiles and electronics parts amid china's economic slowdown. the report says capital investment is picking up, but points to weakness in orders taken by major machinery makers saying consumption is firm, but there's a pause in improvements to consumer sentiment. the report expresses concern about the effect on japan's conditions overseas in the short term. it says the downside risks to the japanese economy include a slow down in china and other asian countries as the u.s. considers normalizing its monetary policy. the latest data from china shows another sign of weakening domestic demand in the country. dpo governme officials say the consumer price index in september there dropped nearly 6%. the national bureau of
statistics say the index fell 5.9% from a year earlier. that's the same rate of decline as in august which marked the biggest drop since september 2009. prices of steel materials and copper wire fell more than 10% over the past year amid sluggish domestic investment. the cost of chemical products dropped due to a fall in crude oil prices. meanwhi meanwhile, china's consumer index price road 1.6% from a year ago, down 0.4% point from a month. it remains the government's target of 3%. prices of clothes and shoes we want up at a slow pace as well as cost of auto repairs and education-related services. moving on to the markets, china's weak consumer price index casts a shadow over invester sentiment. it's below the 18,000 mark at the nikkei. aika has more.
>> reporter: the cpi data from china and weak corporate earnings convinced investor it's safer to convert stocks to catch. they slid had 1.89% to 17891, below the level of 18,000 for the first time in seven sessions. the topix fell 2.2%, the biggest one dayalls this month. benchmark heavy weights led losses trying to lock in profits. automobiles hit hard across the board, honda slid 2 preponderate 5%. toyota was also down with a warning that competition to lower prices in china, the world's biggest car market, hurts the profit margins of the companies. later today, u.s. retail sales data and federal reserve report on business sentiment will be released and we will look closely if they provide a rate hike by the fed. they are awaiting reports by
major american banks so there's a lot on the agenda, and investors are holding off on buy orders for now. >> all right, aika, thanks for that. most of the other markets in the asia pacific region extended their losses following weak data from china. the shanghai composite lost 0.9%, snapping a five day winning streak, and some investors booked prophets from a nearly two month high on tuesday with hopes the government launched further stimulus measures. singapore eased the currency policy for the second time this year. hong kong's index fell.7%, dragged down by banks shares, and they stretched to a third day, etching down 0.1%, and indonesia was closed for a holiday. german auto maker, volkswagen,
is reducing investments in the vw brand division by $1 billion a year. analysts say the firm is making preparations for a large payout to fix the vehicles affected by the emissions scandal. volkswagen said tuesday it is creating room for what they call forward looking technologies by improving fire ining efficiency management. they add in europe and north ameri america, they are installing diesel drives with high e emissions technology to all products as soon as possible. executives have unveiled a version of self-driving technology. it uses satellite data to ensure accurate positioning of a vehicle. the japanese firm demonstrated high performance sensors artificial intelligence, and other technologies for automated driving. one system offers parallel parking, 12 sensors on the front and rear measure distance
between the vehicle and octobers. another technology uses global positions to calculate a car's precise location and road conditions. the company say cars fitted with these turn smoothly and stop add traffic lights. >> we want to join car makers to develop automated driving technology by 2020. >> competition is intensifying among car makers and i.t. firms aiming to commercialize self-driving technologies before the 2020 olympics and paraolympics. here's a look at the other business stories we are following. new car sales in china for september marked the first year own year increase in six months. more than 2 million vehicles sold. that's up about 2% from a year earlier, although, the pace was still slower than industry forecasts. sales of sport utility vehicles
rose sharply, but those of sedans and commercial vehicles declined. prices of goods traded among companies fell in september marking six straight months of decline. the bank of japan says the corporate goods price index dropped 3.9% from a year earlier, the biggest fall since 2009. boj officials say a variety of goods were traded due to concerns about china. hotel managers love a full house, but people who run lodging in japanese cities know there can be a downside. they've been struggling to accommodate a surge in visitors from overseas. now as analysts estimate, the number of foreign travelers to hit a record in 2015, some businesses find enterprising ways to adapt. nhk world takes a look. >> reporter: japan's ancient capital filled with shrines is a
top tourist destination, but that popularity is creating problems for visitors. >> during the holidays, hard to find anything, so what i did, i went elsewhere for two days. >> not only tourists visiting business people are having a hard time as well. >> translator: my colleagues and i can't book a hotel when we travel here for business. there's definitely not enough hotel rooms. >> reporter: soaring demand prompts hotel managers to get creative. this room now accommodates three guests, but it require some adjustments. this is what the room used to look like. a reasonably spacious room for two guests. in the new room, the two beds are pushed together creating more space for futon.
shrinking the tv stand freed up valuable floor space. their method is simple, but it allowed the hotel to accommodate 100 more guests. >> we are getting more guests from abroad, and many group travelers. we have decided to take action and renovate. >> reporter: the shortage of accommodations has become a business opportunity for one real estate developer. the firm bought this old office building and turned it into a guest house in just eight months. this is the family or group option, a room for four. it looks standard, but you can see the remains of the old office building like this pillar. the hotel used the space between the pillars to squeeze in a couch and lamp, and then you
have an on suite lounge. it's a clever work around covering the plumbing for the bathroom. the guest house meets the needs of budget travelers. there's 140 square meter floor became a capsule style room with enclosed beds stacked side by side. the area behind the curtain is left overspace turned into a small common room where guests can relax. >> the experience of living in that capsule, you know, it's my first time. it's a small place, really clean, but really few things, just what i need. >> reporter: the hotel operators are in the midst of renovating another office building in tokyo that will open by the end of the year. that hope to open 20 more in other cities in time for the tokyo
olympics in 2020. >> translator: we can respond quickly to the need for hotels because all we have to do is remodel the inside. we can do that in a short period of time and at a low cost. >> hotels are under construction across japan to cope with the influx of tourists. in the meantime, the hospitality sector is pulling out all the stops to ensure all visitors have a roof over their heads. nhk world. >> that's all for business news. i'm going to hand it back to you, james. >> thank you, gene, for the updates. south korea's prime minister says the government may allow japan's self-defense forces to enter the country in an emergency if deemed necessary. this is the first time the south korean government indicated it would consider such a possibility. prime minister made the remarks
wednesday in a parliamentary debate, in how to respond to a situation if japan asks permission to rescue japanese nationals in case of contingency on the korean peninsula. >> we would allow them to enter only we recognize it's necessary after discussing the situation with japan. >> the prime minister added if they see any intentions from japan other than rescuing its citizens, they would deal with the matter in line with their national interests. opposition to any such activities by the sds is strong in south korea because of japan's decades long colonization of the area. there could be a world of business opportunities. leaders in iran discuss a pact that may give japanese firms access to a promising market. here's the story.
>> reporter: he met with iranian president agreeing to plan a visit by japanese prime minister abe to iran. earlier his counterpart met, pledged to sign an agreement to make it easier for japanese companies to invest in iran. >> translator: we've reached a substantial agreement on an investment deal. japan welcomes this extremely meaningful development. >> reporter: he was joined by representatives of more than 20 firms in trade, automobile, and energy sectors. the minister hosted a reception at the japanese embassy for iranian government officials and executives. >> translator: this is by the foreign minister to show that
japan has very good timing. >> translator: iran is rich in natural resources and has a big population. the market here has huge potential. i hope it develops as an environment where companies can do business freely. >> reporter: iran had the world's fourth largest reserves of crude oil with a population of nearly 80 million, but foreign firms have. unable to do business there due to tough economic sanctions. in july, the leaders of the middle east countries and six world powers reached a deal to curb teheran's nuclear program. in return, governments and world bodies could soon start to ease their sanctions. government officials and executives from europe are also lining up to take advantage of new opportunities.
many attended the international trade fair earlier this month. representatives from 18 japanese firms also took part. >> u.s. firms act fast, not just the firms, but the governments too. i hope we can catch up. >> teheran is one of the best markets in the middle east. >> iran, many people say made in germany, made in germany. >> reporter: japanese leaders are working hard to make up for a slow start, and minister abe made the most of the meeting at the u.n. general assembly last month. one expert on middle east policy says japan has dope well to maintain a relatively neutral stance on iran. >> as everybody knows, iran and saudi arabia are in competition in terms of influence, in terms
of conflict, in terms of their policy, respective policies, so japan has to be very careful. for that, i guess, japan has to make it extremely clear and repeat it again and again that japan's interest is economic and not beginning to involve the military spheres. >> reporter: but he warns that iran's business conditions are murky and could cause risks for foreign investors. he said japan and other major powers should team up to ensure they get the best terms. nhk world. people in a fishing village in northern japan celebrated a homecoming of sorts. they welcomed back the remains of some sacred objects, shrine gate, swept away by the 2011
tsunami and traveled all the way across the pacific. nhk world has more. >> reporter: a tiny fishing village was hit by a giant tsunami four and a half years ago. residents here have been waiting for this day for a long time. the two wooden crates are on the last leg of a journey to the united states and back. inside are part of two gates. people had thought they might never see them again. >> it's amazing they traveled to the u.s. i'm really happy to see them. >> translator: i'm surprised they came back, and i'm grateful to everyone. >> reporter: before the
disaster, a pair of pillars stood at the port. fisherman and their families prayed there for safety before going out to sea. that saw natsunami knocked over gates. two years later, parts of the gates were found washed up on the shore of the u.s. state of oregon. staff at the japanese garden in portland heard about the discovery and decided to invest gait. they got a lucky break. one of the beams was engraved with the name of a person who donated the gates. a pair of executives of the garden travelled to japan to look for more clues. their search lasted more than a year. this is the fisherman whose name is on the beam. he's 85 years old, and he
donated a gate in 1988. >> translator: i looked closely at the photos, yes, it was my name. i was very surprised it traveled so far. just very surprise, and i'm truly thankful. >> reporter: staff at the garden organized fundraisers to help send the beams back home. the shipment timely arrived in the port of yokohama last month. the beams made a round trip of 1400 kilometers. the story has captured the attention of people on both side of the pacific and has become a symbol of their friendship. [ applause ] u.s. ambassador to japan, caroline kennedy, was among the
guests who celebrated the return. now a local craftsman is restoring the gates. they are scheduled to be returned to the port next spring. nhk world. >> kudos to the staff of portland's japanese garden and everyone else who lent a helping hand. thank you for the encouraging report. johnathan oh from the weather desk has an update starting with europe. >> wild weather in europe and we'll see more severe thunderstorms as we move forward in time. i'll set the scene on what's happening for the moment. earlier this week, we had a system pushing through the balkans and russia and it dumped a lot of rainfall. this is what it looked like as an aftermath, all of this rainfall, now, here's the good news, no casualties reported,
but the bad news is there's widespread damage reported in the romanian village, corbu, saturday, and levels broke part of the dam flooding roadways. firefighters had to rescue more than two dozen people from the rising waters, and in total, about 100 homes were damaged in the flood. you can see here the damage that's leftover from the particular aftermath from the dam breaking, all the water flowing through. it looks like the responsible low pressure system pushed further east, but there's rainfall in portions of turkey and further eastward, and that's something to monitor. we have another low pressure system that is causing problems for the moment, and it is a cutoff low located over italy, and because it is cut off from the jet stream, these steering air currents, it is going to stay over italy and move slowly towards the east, and it's not a
particularly helpful low pressure system because it is a powerful one, and it is associated with thunderstorms, strong thunderstorms with strong wind gust, heavy rainfall, possibly tornados and large hay associated with this particular system as we move forward in time. because it is a slow mover, we're looking at the possibility of some flooding, some areas may see 100 millimeters of rainfall over the next 72 hours, and when you have the strong wind gusts, that causes concerns with the trees. when it comes to the balkan peninsula and romania, we are steering clear of any excessive precipitation, but we may deal with cloud cover and showers. from berlin spoo paris, wet weather wednesday, highs will be warmer around 10 opposed to single digits, rome, a high of 2 and thunderstorms. the western pacific has two tropical storms to track. first, this one moving west at 30 kilometers per hour. it is expected to intensify and setting sights on the northern
portions of the philippines into the latter part of the weekend and next week. we'll watch this particular system as it moves further west, and then the other moves west, northwest at 25 kilometers per hour, gusting to 90. gaum, look out for impact towards the latter part of the week and into the weekend. we'll watch this system because it's also getting very close to the islands. looking at some very wet weather moving forward throughout the next three days other so. meanwhile, up in japan, siberia chilly air over the area bringing down some snow precipitation. you're looking at the nice white layers on the ground. looks like we're going to have drier conditions and chilly air in place throughout the next couple of days. i hope you have a good day wherever you are. here's your extended outlook.